Those flat bar triple front mechs DO work on road shifters!

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Manc33
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Joined: 25 Apr 2015, 9:37pm

Those flat bar triple front mechs DO work on road shifters!

Postby Manc33 » 20 Dec 2018, 7:34pm

I am running a FD-R443 (supposedly for use with flat bar shifters) with a Dura-Ace road shifter and despite the R443 front mech having a longer swingarm, it seems to work just as well as my FD-6503 was doing.

What I know from the past is a left MTB shifter doesn't quite work right with these flat bar mechs (R443/R773) although if you have the cable extra loose on the granny, they can be made to work.

So what exactly is "flat bar" lol. It seems to have the same cable pull on flat bar front mechs as it does on road shifters from my recent usage. I always thought the flat bar mechs had a unique cable pull all of their own?

It might be better using one of these flat bar FD's because the longer swingarm makes the shift lighter. The R773 front mech is the one to go for, cheap and very high quality from my past experiences using that one, it shifted well from a 24t granny to a 38t middle whereas the R443 was noticeably slightly slower to shift.
Only weird bikes are interesting anymore.

peetee
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Re: Those flat bar triple front mechs DO work on road shifters!

Postby peetee » 20 Dec 2018, 8:05pm

Which generation of Dura Ace?
Current status report:
Latter side of fifty and feeling less than nifty.
Too many bikes on pegs and too few miles in the legs.

rjb
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Re: Those flat bar triple front mechs DO work on road shifters!

Postby rjb » 20 Dec 2018, 8:19pm

I did this mod to my son in laws bike a giant rapid 8 speed flat bar road bike. Converting from flat bars to drops with 9 speed tiagra shifters the front mech a FDR- 443 worked fine despite the cable pull supposedly not being strictly compatible. You can read about it here. From 2011 viewtopic.php?f=1&t=54152&p=455179&hilit=Flat+Giant#p455179. :wink:
The mech is described as being a road mech. This was meant to signify it was designed for large 52 teeth road chainrings not smaller MTB ones. This caused a certain amount of confusion as it has a MTB pull ratio. :wink:
Perhaps it's complicated by chainring spacing and I was just lucky. Are road chain sets spaced differently to MTB ones, how about different speeds, are 8 speed the same as 9,10,11 - I won't even go as far as12. :lol:
Last edited by rjb on 20 Dec 2018, 8:32pm, edited 1 time in total.
At the last count:- Focus Variado, Peugeot 531 pro, Dawes Discovery Tandem, Dawes Kingpin, Raleigh 20, Falcon K2 MTB dropped bar tourer, Longstaff trike conversion on a Falcon corsa. :D

Brucey
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Re: Those flat bar triple front mechs DO work on road shifters!

Postby Brucey » 20 Dec 2018, 8:32pm

I think it is more the case that you can get away with murder if you are not that fussy and/or you don't really need the trim clicks to all be 'just right'

cheers
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~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Brucey~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Manc33
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Re: Those flat bar triple front mechs DO work on road shifters!

Postby Manc33 » 21 Dec 2018, 1:23am

peetee wrote:Which generation of Dura Ace?


7703 left shifter.

Maybe the mech being the 8-speed version (used with a 9-speed chain) has something to do with it working seemingly as well as the 9-speed triple FD-6603 was.

rjb I am using a 48t outer and it's been OK. The 6503 also worked fine on the same 48t outer (with a 36t middle and 22t granny).

Brucey the thing is I don't think I needed to use the trim clicks, but I did on the FD-6503.

I might just get the FD-R773 (50t version) and see what it's like but then, it's for 10-speed and might bring back needing the trim clicks. I always want something that will last ages and while the R443 works, it's only on because the FD-6603 is temporarily out of action.
Last edited by Manc33 on 21 Dec 2018, 7:18pm, edited 1 time in total.
Only weird bikes are interesting anymore.

MarcusT
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Re: Those flat bar triple front mechs DO work on road shifters!

Postby MarcusT » 21 Dec 2018, 5:07am

Sometimes things just work.
When I wanted to use an 8 speed cassette on my 9 speed MTB, everyone said it won't work.
I tried it, used it on the Sella Ronda and did not have a single skip or miss.

Sometimes you have got to try it. :wink:
I wish it were simple as riding a bike

PT1029
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Re: Those flat bar triple front mechs DO work on road shifters!

Postby PT1029 » 21 Dec 2018, 6:09am

It used to be that all flat bar levers were ATB shifters.
If I remember correctly, then came along cyclists who wanted the speed of a racer but without the drop bars, so flat bar levers for road gears became available. Due to chain line/chain ring sizes they couldn't simply put ATB mechs/levers on road style chainsets.
I'm not sure if the parts stated are road or ATB - life is too short to get drawn into the Shimano compatibility charts!

NetworkMan
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Re: Those flat bar triple front mechs DO work on road shifters!

Postby NetworkMan » 21 Dec 2018, 3:43pm

PT1029 wrote:It used to be that all flat bar levers were ATB shifters.
If I remember correctly, then came along cyclists who wanted the speed of a racer but without the drop bars, so flat bar levers for road gears became available. Due to chain line/chain ring sizes they couldn't simply put ATB mechs/levers on road style chainsets.
I'm not sure if the parts stated are road or ATB - life is too short to get drawn into the Shimano compatibility charts!

That is similarly to my understanding, however, the front road shifter also needs to pull less cable than the MTB one. I too don't want to descend into the dark world of Shimano compatibility charts and obsolete catalogues!

fastpedaller
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Re: Those flat bar triple front mechs DO work on road shifters!

Postby fastpedaller » 21 Dec 2018, 11:37pm

This reminded me of the mod I made to alter the cable run to the road front mech to effectively lengthen the lever arm when using straight bars with ezfire brakelevers/gear changers..... It took me a while to find it in the photo library (gave up with the thread search!) Just a piece of stainless bashed around an old spoke created it.
cable3.jpg

freeflow
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Re: Those flat bar triple front mechs DO work on road shifters!

Postby freeflow » 23 Dec 2018, 5:02am

The R in the code number means that is designed to work with Road and not MTB equipment. Please check the Shimano technical pages if you have doubt.

Manc33
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Joined: 25 Apr 2015, 9:37pm

Re: Those flat bar triple front mechs DO work on road shifters!

Postby Manc33 » 23 Dec 2018, 11:19pm

freeflow wrote:The R in the code number means that is designed to work with Road and not MTB equipment. Please check the Shimano technical pages if you have doubt.


But the R443 and R773 front mechs exist for use with flat bar shifters.

Why, if a FD-6503 could be used? Are they just trying to keep model numbers together?
Only weird bikes are interesting anymore.

Manc33
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Joined: 25 Apr 2015, 9:37pm

Re: Those flat bar triple front mechs DO work on road shifters!

Postby Manc33 » 2 Jan 2019, 8:02pm

I think I know why the flat bar front mechs have a longer swingarm although they still have a road shifter cable pull - because they are for use with flat bar thumb shifters so the leverage needs to be more. That's confusing because the longer swingarm makes it seem like the cable pull is different to road mechs but it's the same, my STi shifters worked perfectly with the R443 front mech.
Only weird bikes are interesting anymore.